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Volcano Watch: Kilauea activity update for August 25, 2016


This video clip, filmed on August 12, 2016, shows a typical pāhoehoe breakout on Kīlauea Volcano’s “61g” lava flow (actual speed). Since the ongoing East Rift Zone (Puʻu ʻŌʻō) eruption began in 1983, the net result of countless pāhoehoe flows like this is that 142 square kilometers (55 square miles) of federal, state, and private land on Kīlauea Volcano have been covered by lava. Courtesy of USGS/HVO


Time-lapse thermal image movie of Halemaumau Overlook Vent. August 18-25, 2016. Images courtesy of USGS/HVO


Time-lapse movie of Halemaʻumaʻu Overlook Vent from Hawaiian Volcano Observatory. August 18-25, 2016. Images courtesy of USGS/HVO


Time-lapse movie of Kīlauea Caldera from Hawaiian Volcano Observatory. August 18-25, 2016. Images courtesy of USGS/HVO

(Activity updates are written by scientists at the U.S. Geological Survey’s Hawaiian Volcano Observatory.)

Kīlauea continues to erupt at its summit and East Rift Zone. During the past week, the summit lava lake level varied between about 20 m and 40 m (66–131 ft) below the vent rim within Halema‘uma‘u Crater. On the East Rift Zone, the “61g” lava flow continued to advance across the coastal plain and enter the ocean. The lava flow does not pose an immediate threat to nearby communities.

Mauna Loa is not erupting. Seismicity remains elevated relative to the long-term background rate, but has not changed significantly over the past week. Earthquakes are occurring mostly in the volcano’s south caldera and upper Southwest Rift Zone at depths less than 5 km (3 mi). Global Positioning System (GPS) measurements show deformation related to inflation of a magma reservoir beneath the summit and upper Southwest Rift Zone, with inflation occurring mainly in the southwestern part of the magma storage complex.

Two earthquakes were reported felt on the Island of Hawaiʻi in the past week. On Wednesday, August 24, 2016, at 12:17 p.m., HST, a magnitude-3.8 earthquake occurred 5.1 km (3.2 mi) southeast of Kīlauea Volcano’s summit at a depth of 3.0 km (1.8 mi). At 1:12 p.m. on the same day, a magnitude-3.5 aftershock occurred at a similar location and depth.

Please visit the HVO website (hvo.wr.usgs.gov) for past Volcano Watch articles, Kīlauea daily eruption updates, Mauna Loa weekly updates, volcano photos, recent earthquakes info, and more; call for summary updates at 808-967-8862 (Kīlauea) or 808-967-8866 (Mauna Loa); email questions to askHVO@usgs.gov


Time-lapse multi-image movie of Pu’u ‘O’o Crater. August 18-25, 2016. Images courtesy of USGS/HVO


Time-lapse movie from images gathered from a temporary thermal camera looking into Pu’u ‘O’o Crater. The temperature scale is in degrees Celsius up to a maximum of 500 Celsius (932 Fahrenheit) for this camera model, and scales based on the maximum and minimum temperatures within the frame. Thick fume, image pixel size and other factors often result in image temperatures being lower than actual surface temperatures. August 18-25, 2016. Images courtesy of USGS/HVO

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